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The Season of Scarlett Johansson: Two Hot Films, Her Marvel Future, Woody Allen and a Pick for President

With Noah Baumbach’s ‘Marriage Story’ and Taika Waititi’s ‘Jojo Rabbit’, her Avengers spinoff ‘Black Widow’ and the mantle of the world’s highest-grossing actress, Johansson isn’t afraid to say how she really feels about Disney and her plans to direct.

When Scarlett Johansson met writer-director Noah Baumbach for lunch in 2016 to talk about a role, she was in the midst of a private ordeal, divorcing her second husband, Frenchman Romain Dauriac. Baumbach, who didn’t know about Johansson’s pending split, was eager to discuss an unusually exposing film he was writing. The tragicomic story would explore terrain Baumbach encountered while ending his marriage to actress Jennifer Jason Leigh — the hideous fights, the mercenary lawyers, the wistful moments of wondering whether things could be different.

Before Baumbach launched into his pitch about why he thought Johansson would be perfect for the role opposite Adam Driver, the actress shared what was going on in her marriage. “It totally caught me off guard,” Baumbach says. “I was like, ‘Well, you’re going to either hate this idea or love it. This may be exactly not the headspace you want to be putting yourself in, or maybe it will be healing.’ ” The movie, Marriage Story, turned out to be the latter. “We talked a lot about the actual experience of divorce because I was in the middle of the process,” Johansson says. “We talked about becoming a parent, and our parents. The expectation that comes with being in any kind of a relationship, and the disappointment that can come with that expectation.

Johansson, 34, is recounting this story in early August on the set of Marvel’s Black Widow outside London, where she has been living with Rose, her 5-year-old daughter with Dauriac, for five months. Fresh from a morning of fight training, she arrives for an interview in a wood-paneled conference room at Pinewood Studios wearing an Avengers T-shirt, her hair in a messy bun, a gold chain with Rose’s name on her throat. It’s a hectic time for the actress: This fall, Johansson, who has never been nominated for an Oscar despite critically acclaimed performances in such movies as Lost in Translation and Match Point, stars in two likely awards contenders, Marriage Story for Netflix and Taika Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit, for Fox Searchlight, both screening at the Toronto Film Festival. When Black Widow opens in May, it will be the first female-fronted extravaganza to kick off the summer box office season. She also is preparing to send Rose to kindergarten in New York City and wed her fiance, Saturday Night Live’s Colin Jost.

In person, the actress is unguarded and assured, even on thorny topics — from actors playing characters of different races (which sparked a fierce debate) to whom she’s backing for president to why she’s standing by Woody Allen. She apologizes that her answer to one question sounds “farty” (pretentious) but never asks for forgiveness for her opinions.

How do I feel about Woody Allen?” Johansson lets the question hang for a moment. Ever since the #MeToo movement caused Dylan Farrow’s sexual abuse allegations against her father to be re-examined, much of Hollywood has distanced itself from Allen. The filmmaker long has denied the claims, but many actors who have worked with him, including Michael Caine, Timothée Chalamet and Greta Gerwig, have publicly expressed regret about doing so, and Allen has been unable to find a U.S. distributor for his movies since Amazon canceled his deal in 2018. Allen directed Johansson in Match Point (2005), Scoop (2006) and Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008) and played a key role in shaping her career as one of Hollywood’s most sought-after leading ladies. After a beat, Johansson makes it clear that she disagrees with many of her peers. “I love Woody,” she says. “I believe him, and I would work with him anytime.”

Johansson continues: “I see Woody whenever I can, and I have had a lot of conversations with him about it. I have been very direct with him, and he’s very direct with me. He maintains his innocence, and I believe him.” Asked if this position feels fraught to express in a cultural environment where there is a new and powerful emphasis on believing women’s allegations, Johansson says, “It’s hard because it’s a time where people are very fired up, and understandably. Things needed to be stirred up, and so people have a lot of passion and a lot of strong feelings and are angry, and rightfully so. It’s an intense time.”

Full interview: hollywoodreporter.com

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Scarlett Johansson Reveals What We’ll Learn About Black Widow in Stand-Alone Movie

Scarlett Johansson can finally talk about her upcoming “Black Widow” movie.

While she can’t divulge spoilers, she let out a big sigh of relief after the film was officially announced on Saturday during the Marvel Studios presentation at Comic-Con.

I feel like a weight has been lifted,” the Oscar nominee told Variety.

“Black Widow” is currently in production in London. Johansson was joined at Comic-Con by director Cate Shortland and costars Rachel Weisz, Florence Pugh and David Harbour. Their trip to San Diego was only about a day-long before they had to jump on a plane back to the set. “We do about seven pages of dialogue this week so maybe [“Black Widow”] is a little different than most Marvel movies,” Johansson said. “There’s lots of talking. I get to talk more. I could tell you that.”

She also said of her titular character, “I think we’ll learn what she’s scared of.

During the presentation in Hall H, Johansson remarked that she couldn’t have made the movie a decade ago.

I think I could have made the film 10 years ago but it would have been a very different film,” she explained to Variety. “I think it probably would have been much more of a caricature of a person. I feel after living an extra 10 years and becoming a mother and you know, life and how it happens to you, I feel much more in myself and able to explore all the kind of things that make me uncomfortable and then just lay it out for you guys.

It feels like I’m a stronger person by the fact that I have embraced my vulnerability,” she continued. “And I think that will make this version of the character really, hopefully, complex.

Johansson also gushed over Shortland. “Cate is the perfect director because she always goes back to dig for what is real, what is brutally real and honest and what the truth of each scene is,” she said. “And not only does she have an incredible visual vocabulary, which is obvious in her work, but she’s always searching for the uncomfortable, brutal truth, and that’s what we need for this film.

Source: variety.com

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Scarlett Johansson Defended Her Controversial Casting Comments By Saying She Was “Edited For Click Bait”

An interview that was recently published has been edited for click bait and is widely taken out of context,” Johansson said in a statement.

Scarlett Johansson said comments she made in an interview last week regarding the roles she should be allowed to play were taken out of context and “edited for click bait.”

In an interview with As If magazine published last week, Johansson said that as an actor, she “should be allowed to play any person, or any tree, or any animal because that is my job and the requirements of my job.

Her response was swiftly criticized online; the actor has faced previous controversies surrounding her casting in roles portraying nonwhite and nonbinary characters.

In a statement to BuzzFeed News on Monday, the actor clarified her comments, saying she was having a conversation with the artist David Salle about the “confrontation between political correctness and art.”

I personally feel that, in an ideal world, any actor should be able to play anybody and Art, in all forms, should be immune to political correctness,” she said in a statement. “That is the point I was making, albeit didn’t come across that way.”

The actor said she recognized her industry “favors Caucasian, cis gendered actors” and that “not every actor has been given the same opportunities that [she has] been privileged to.”

Johansson said she has always supported “diversity in every industry and will continue to fight for projects where everyone is included.

Johansson’s As If interview echoed the actor’s growing history of controversies regarding representation and inclusion in Hollywood.

In 2017 after the first images of Johansson in Ghost in the Shell were released, the actor was criticized for playing the lead in a movie based on a popular Japanese manga.

The following year, after widespread criticism, including from trans actors Trace Lysette and Jamie Clayton, Johansson withdrew from playing the role of Dante “Tex” Gill, a trans man, in a film called Rub & Tug.

Amid the backlash in 2018, the actor’s publicist said: “Tell them that they can be directed to Jeffrey Tambor, Jared Leto, and Felicity Huffman’s reps for comment.

Tambor (Transparent), Leto (Dallas Buyers Club), and Huffman (Transamerica) have all played trans actors, and they all received critical acclaim for their performances.

Johansson’s decisions to play the roles of marginalized people has been the source of many memes.

You can read Johansson’s complete statement regarding the latest backlash below:

An interview that was recently published has been edited for click bait and is widely taken out of context. The question I was answering in my conversation with the contemporary artist, David Salle, was about the confrontation between political correctness and art. I personally feel that, in an ideal world, any actor should be able to play anybody and Art, in all forms, should be immune to political correctness. That is the point I was making, albeit didn’t come across that way. I recognize that in reality, there is a wide spread discrepancy amongst my industry that favors Caucasian, cis gendered actors and that not every actor has been given the same opportunities that I have been privileged to. I continue to support, and always have, diversity in every industry and will continue to fight for projects where everyone is included.

Source: buzzfeednews.com

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Scarlett Johansson and Colin Jost Are Engaged

The best thing about Scarlett Johansson and Colin Jost getting engaged is that ScarJo can keep her press-given nickname, if she chooses to take his name. Just kidding, it’s probably the love or whatever. Johansson’s publicist confirmed the news to the Associated Press on Sunday. No date has been set, but Jost is on hiatus right now, so a quick elopement before season 45 isn’t the worst idea. The couple made their first public appearance in 2017 and most recently attended the premiere of Endgame together. It will be his first marriage and her third. Johansson was previously wed to Ryan Reynolds and French journalist–art consultant Romain Dauriac. She has a daughter with Dauriac. No word on where the wedding will take place, but CoJo knows some great spots in the Hamptons.

Source: thecut.com

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Scarlett Johansson’s Trainers Open Up About Her Intense Workouts: ‘Her Work Ethic Is Unmatched’

Scarlett Johansson‘s fitness regime really is as tough as you’d imagine.

The 34-year-old’s trainer and co-founder of Homage fitness Eric Johnson, tells PEOPLE he works with her to prepare for roles, but also to remain in shape when she’s not filming.

She’s very consistent,” Eric says. “We go anywhere from two to three days a week when we’re maintaining and up to five, six days a week.

Eric says while Johansson isn’t a fan of conditioning work, she does do a lot of strength training to build muscle.

We are making sure that she’s strong enough that everything else is easy when it comes to her skill acquisition and stunt training or if she wants to go and learn a new sport, like tennis,” he adds. “What’s amazing with Scarlett is that she really loves the process. She’s extremely strong.

Eric and his brother Ryan’s curated gyms are located in residential buildings in Miami, New York, and D.C., where clients can expect to use turf areas, sleds, battling ropes, and metabolic conditioning tools.

We also have the classic machines that you would see in any big box gym and another space with a big squat rack where you can bench press and squat and dead lift,” Ryan says. “On the top floor we’ve made it where all the cardio machines are along with the stretching area.

Given Johansson’s intense filming schedule, Eric says exercising “has to become like brushing your teeth” and they work together to figure out the best time for her schedule.

They also recommend “choosing your battles.

If it’s a Monday and you’re super slammed and you can just get a 20 to 30 minute session in, then do that,” Ryan says. “Then on Tuesday, if the day frees up and you can go a little longer, then do a 75-minute session. When Scarlett has those long night shoots and she’s filming throughout the night, that’s not the best day to do an hour-long session.

Source: people.com